Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Another National Park checked

Headed to Shenandoah National Park last weekend.

Old Rag Mountain (3,291 ft)
9.1 mile with 2,415 ft (736 m) elevation gain
Mostly easy except Class 3 scrambling in the last 1.1 mile to the summit

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Dreamlist for Outdoor Gear

In preparation for my big road trip / backcountry hiking trip - I have come to conclude that these are the gears I wish I can own. High quality ultra lightweight gear that is worth the $$$$.

Gear Wishlist      

  1. Hyperlite Mountain Gear (HMG) 3400 Bacpack

    Weight: 32 oz | 907g      Price: $330

    Backpacker Mag's best ultraweight backpack. Cuben Fiber Hybrid makes up its fabric, a highly durable Dyneema material that is 50-70 percent lighter than Kevlar and four times stronger. It was this or the ZPacks Arc Blast but aesthetics, functionality, little bells and whistles (minimalism!) won me over.

  2. Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XTherm Sleeping Pad

    R-value: 5.7      Weight: 15 oz (Reg)      Pack Size: 1L      Thickness: 1.5 in      Price: $

    Cheaper alternative: NeoAir XLite ($159) or ProLite Plus ($99)
  3. HMG UltaMid 2

    With a bathtub interior mesh!
  4. Suunto Traverse Sapphire Black

  5. Zpacks Cuben Fibre Poncho/Footprint/Packcover

    Weight: 6 oz      Price: $175
  6. Komperdell Ultralite Vario 4 Compact

    Weight: 14 oz | 396 g      Price: $239

    Cheaper alternative: Black Diamond Distance FLZ Trekking Poles ($129) and Alpine Carbon Z ($189)
  7. BioLite BaseCamp Wood Burning Stove
  8. Oru (Origami) Kayak


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Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Nintendo: bullish or bearish?

a Newbie's Guide...

[July 19th 11:00 CDT]

Source: YAHOO! Finance

Going long with Pokemon Go Nintendo (NTDOY)?

Only if you were in the market the first three days after Pokemon Go was released, tbh.

Yes, you may say it has been going up the last eight days, but has anyone tried to understand why it's going up?
 $310 per share (33,000 ¥), is it justified?

P/E ratio is at 230 right now. Which means people are paying 230 times more than what they are actually earning.

Now let's get to the point...

  • Pokemon is very huge in Asia and it's not released in Asia yet
  • Gaming industry is very big in Asia, hence potentially profitable 
  • Nintendo owns brand rights to Pokemon

REALITY CHECK - what's the bigger picture?
  • Nintendo owns 10% shares in Creatures Inc, originator of Pokemon
  • Nintendo owns 32% shares of Pokemon Company, which with Niantic, a Google spin-off the company helped Niantic Inc. develop Pokemon Go 
  • Niantic Inc, the main developer and distributor, also owns the platform of Pokemon Go, so majority of fees will go to them (30% goes to Apple, being an app)
  • Being the first AR game for the masses, development fee is massive (they had to raise $20mil in capital for Niantic)
  • Nintendo will not get profits directly from Pokemon Go, only royalties (sounds like about 10-16% profit margin, which is not much)

Source: WSJ

(More) Cons:
  • Fan-base for first generation Pokemon are mostly millenials - so release of the subsequent gen of pokemon would not keep players engaged long enough (speaking from a millenial herself who is into the gaming industry)
  • How can Nintendo (or more like Niantic and Alphabet Inc) keep the booming popularity and maintain players' interest. Millenials are at the age where they can afford to spend on in-app purchases, but also the fastest to get bored and move on
  • Gen-Z are the ones that should be appealed as they're the generation that mobile gaming profits the most from (parents will certainly spend on their children than themselves!)
  • Game relies on people going out to play - safety issue a big thing in Asian countries and concerned Asian parents, 3G/4G limitations in poorer parts of Asia
  • Pokemon Go is a micro-transaction model but since it depends on users going out to different stops - it actually discourages the pay-to-play
  • How long until it releases in Asia? Delays in launch of Pokemon Go in Asia will worry investors.


American market is a consumerism capitalist, so it's expected to be profitable there. Releases in Europe wouldn't be as big of a profit, remember, number of downloads does not equate profits. Think of the European and English culture and how it's related to the gaming industry there, it's never a big gain there. They'd happily download it (it's free to do so) but would be much more reluctant to spend on in-app purchases like their Asian and American counterparts.

  • The company has been performing poorly in Q3 and Q4 with console sales and has a poor outlook of the next fiscal year 2016/2017
  • Has always been skeptical about mobile gaming but will need to move quickly into the arena to keep up with Pokemon Go momentum

High-Yield High-Risk:
  • Investors are investing in 'hope', rather than actual quants.
  • Investors are banking in on quick profits, but mainly short-term
  • A lot of these investors are a combination of young investors and seasoned investors hurt by worldwide dip in indexes thanks to Brexit and generally sluggish worldwide economy.
  • It's a ticking bomb so timing is essential to get in and get out

Question is,
  1. How long will Nintendo's shares keep going up at this rate? - Until Nintendo reports its next quarterly profits which won't be as what people expect (duh) which will then send the shares crashing, unless they can come up with something quickly the next two months +
  2. Will its release in Asia push it further up? - yes if it can get into China's market asap before counterfeits and copies come in
  3. How does Pokemon Go keep players from getting bored once they've reached the level and amount of Pokemon caught that they're contented with?
KING's performance prior to acquisition by Activision. Source: Bloomberg

A similar case study, KING Digital Entertainment, the company which developed Candy Crush thought they were going to be big but ended up opening below their IPO and stagnated before being acquired by Activision (ATVI). Yes, people will argue that there is a loyal fanbase with Pokemon, but Candy Crush appeals to a wider range of ages rather than just millennials.

My own super rough prediction, since there are currently no models in predicting the future of NTDOY

My conclusion: Slightly bullish for the next week but generally bearish.

Just my two-cents!

My background? I am a millenial who plays moderately (currently on Level 15 with 57 pokemon on the Pokedox. Team Valor!).


Legal Disclaimer and Risk Statement: The content on this site and materials linked from the Web is for informational and educational purposes and should be used at your own risk. The author is not responsible for the warranties of accuracy and completeness in judgment for any particular investment advice. Consultation with a professional financial advisor, conducting your own research and undertaking independent due diligence is highly recommended before making any investment decisions. Trading of securities has both potential risks and rewards and it may not suitable for all readers.


Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Mica The Lab's training schedule

Day 14 - 16 (Fri Sat Sun)
Slept through the night 2/3
No snapping by G
Leash walking

Week 3 (10 week old)
Training: Off, Leave it, Leash
G&M: 2 snaps
Sleeps through the night 70%
Pee accident few times (usually after playtime)

Week 4 (11 week old)
Training: Off, Leave it, Leash, Come, Stay
G&M: Few snaps
Sleeps through the night 100%

Week 5 (12 week old)
Training: Off, Leave it, Leash, Come, Stay, Okay, Crawl
Sleeps through night 100%

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Mica the Lab's training wishlist

I am a dreamer, but more so an ambitious executer! Let's hope Mica gets some of these wishlist down in the next year, or two? =D

Training wishlist for Mica:
( ) indicating key words.
  1. Licks face on command (Kiss)
  2. Sit when I stop walking
  3. (Jump)
  4. Hides face on command (Hide face)
  5. GI Joe (Crawl)
  6. Play dead (Bang)
  7. Ring bell for potty (Potty)
  8. Brings leash to me before walk (Leash)
  9. Close the door behind her (Shut Door)
  10. (Speak) and Stop - lol don't want to teach him that barking is okay hence the stop command
  11. Nodding (Do You Agree)

Advanced wishlist;
  1. Carry newspapers and grocery bags, gently (Fetch and carry)
  2. Put away toys (Drop in Basket)
  3. Turn off the Light (Lights Off)
  4. Hide and Seek (Find It)
  5. Sing-a-long (Sing)
  6. Tracking (Trail, Find)
  7. Mathematician (Count)

Training tips

Training tips:


Training to be done before meal times
3Rs: Restriction, Redirection, Retraining
Training duration: 5-8 mins (April thinks 3 mins is max!)
Train respect: Sit before food, water, toys, going out of the door
Training reward: Verbal cue 'good girl' and her food kibbles as rewards (before using higher value treats with time)
Trainer: Maintain calmness myself and minimize raising of voice to avoid desensitization to normal volume speeches
Treats restriction: Strictly no treats allowed unless it's for training. Treats should be a reward for 'work'. You do not want to lower the value of the treat and raise her expectations
Bite inhibition - esp hand, feet, shoes and clothes (and reward non-biting licks)
Reward calmness (during time-out)

Training against people(or internet)'s advice:
1. Did not bring toys/towel to rub on her litter mates for her to sleep better to not make her miss her litter mates more and to allow better adjustment to home and new parents (us)
2. Did not let her sleep with us the first few nights in order to give her time (few days) to adjust to new home with rewards for calming down before allowing her to sleep in the master bedroom, in her crate of course. 

Key words trained up to day 12 (listed in order of training):
Good girl (positive cue)
Leave it
Go to your bed
Stay close

Key words left to train:
Toy (name of toys?)
Watch me

Saturday, June 11, 2016

Puppy's first three days...

Black labrador Mica is a new addition to the family! Being an Asian parent means that a strict schedule, early training and eyeing her like a hawk during free roaming is a MUST :p

So here is my little diary to find that balance between what I want her to do and what her inherent personality is and bladder/bowel schedule is like...

Day 0 (Friday)
Got beautiful girl Mica followed by a 6 hour drive with two potty stops.
Introduce potty spot in backyard and master balcony
Training: Crate, First ascend of two flights of stairs
Food out all day
Last potty 11:30pm
Sleep: guest bedroom in her crate
Cried most of the night.

Day 1 (Saturday)
3am, 7am, 9.30am potty
Training: Crate
Food out all day
Pee accident x2 (master and living)
Last potty 10pm
Sleep: guest bedroom. Cried most of the night.

Day 2 (Sunday)
12:30am potty but cried after 2h30m
3:30am cried when removed but no potty
7:30am cried when let out for food and potty
Training: Crate, Collar
Food: getting used to solid food with some water.
Note: since she didn't potty at 3am should have brought her out directly in am and not worry about food+water until after!
Swim test: she's still scared (but water is too cold it's 8am lol!)
Training: Slept in crate well from 9am to 11:30am!
12pm Accident pee. Happy to be in backyard but not calmed yet so peed in pen.
Slept in guest bedroom. Less crying.

Day 3 (Monday)
7am: Pooped
Training: Sit, Separation Anxiety (in bathroom)
Socialization: Metro rail, Downtown, Bath
Went to find pool for water on her own
Walk: Bayou
Water stopped by 8:30pm
Bedtime potty 12am and 5am(?)
Slept in guest bedroom, mostly quiet all night

Strict schedule STARTS
Day 4 (Tues)
see next post...

Monday, April 11, 2016

Music Log

7 Years (Lucas Graham)
Pillow talk (Zayn)
Lost Stars (Adam Levine)
Love Yourself - guitar rhythm needs practicing

Electric Guitar (while A is at her guitar lessons)
Are You Gonna Be My Girl (Jet)
Hands Down (Dashboard Confessionals)

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Valentine's Day

Since it's the Valentine's weekend, here are three parts in ONE post curated for your indulgence.

Random bits of everything to read together with your (better) half:

1. Ideas for a new home - even if it's just for daydreaming purposes

2. Dream home add-ons - because dreaming about one isn't enough

3. Secrets of the happiest couples - statistics always rule them all

4. Our sleeping habits - and what it means

5. Relationship movies (or this list?) to binge over the weekend

6. Which celebrity couple are you like?



1) Remember when you first started dating? You would hang onto each other’s every word as if it were scripture. Now, though, it’s okay to sometimes get distracted and be all like:


2) And the great thing is that you probably won’t get upset at each other if that happens. Because we’ve learnt to embrace each other’s weirdness.

you so cute monica friends

3) There may have been a time when you couldn’t keep your hands off each other every time you were alone…

But that time has long passed.

4) And a night in is really more like

couple lazy

5) But when things do get heated up, it isn’t as awkward as it was before.

Remember your first kiss?
awkward kiss
Yeah… well now at least it’s more like
ross and rachel friends kiss

6) And eating together is no longer a chore because you don’t need to pretend you’re more lady-like or gentlemanly than you really are.

chew like you have a secret

7) Now you can truly be yourself.

joey friends not even sorry

8) Emission of bodily gases is no longer taboo around each other.

He could scream
And you’ll probably just be like

9) You don’t feel a need to stalk each other’s social media profiles to find out each other’s thoughts and feelings.

10) Getting dressed isn’t as much as a headache as it used to be either.

joan mad men
jenna marbles no makeup

11) And it doesn’t suck as much when either one of you cancels on a date.

hates me
selena gomez thumbs up

12) Those lovers’ tiffs are way less intense than they used to be.

How you used to react during a fight:
santana glee hysterical crying
How you react now:
i got this chang community

13) Probably because you’re so much more secure about your relationship. And it’ll take a lot to make you lose faith in what you guys took so long to build.

youre a bird im a bird notebook

14) You no longer need massive shows of affection to prove your love for each other


15) Or to parade your relationship all over the internet.

stfu couples

16) Because you’ve become so comfortable in your little world. That you really don’t care enough to show it to the rest of the real world.

notebook cute face ryan gosling

17) You start to realise it’s the tiny every day things that matter. Like knowing he’s there even when he’s not;

tony skins phonecall

18) Realising that there hasn’t been a single day that has gone by without exchanging at least one text, and knowing that it probably won’t stop anytime soon;

iphone message

19) And just knowing and trusting that he’ll never do anything to hurt you


20) And even though some things have changed, mostly they’ve been for the better. Because you know you’ve reached a point where you just don’t need to prove anything to each other anymore and you still think the other’s amazing.


and what about the 21 weird oddities that makes you know that one is true love?

Love is a pretty powerful drug. When you feel it, you really feel it. It can suspend time, making the whole world seem still except for you two.
It feeds you more than any nourishment; you feel full in the presence of love.
But there’s a vast difference between love and true love. True love knows no depth. It’s an endless tunnel that sweeps you up in the whirlwind and you’re never quite free from it. It stays with you. And you hope this person will too.
True love isn’t ordinary. It doesn’t come around often and that’s how you’ll know it’s genuine.
….Or, you know, you could read this list and find out for yourself. Here are the 21 signs you are truly in love with your partner:
1. You see something and instead of thinking how happy it makes you, you think about how happy it would make them.
2. You feel more at home with them than you’ve ever felt in your entire life. Even when you were 7 and had all the stuffed animals in the world.
3. You find yourself singing Macy Gray at various times throughout the day.
4. You can get all-out mad or depressed or happy or whatever it is that you are in front of them. And you know it won’t change how they feel about you.
5. Patience: It doesn’t matter how long it takes for them to understand something, you enjoy spending the time teaching or learning from them.
6. You have the option to wear your go-to outfit, but still take an extra five minutes to get ready
7. You live for their quirks. You love that they take up the entire dance floor when they break a move. You love that you can’t share meals because they hate chicken. You love that they will discuss celebrities like they’re your real friends. You’d much rather have them be weird than anyone else.
8. You still go over to their place no matter how late at night it is and how tired you feel. It’s always worth it.
9. You don’t desire other people. Yes, you might find some of them attractive, but no part of you wants them.
10. Their happiness means more than your own.
11. You willingly give in to the things you normally don’t compromise on.
12. You never grow tired of their company. It’s always just better when they are there. Even if you two don’t fill the silence, you’re content simply knowing they are present.
13. You have moments of insecurity but their reassurance makes you realize it doesn’t matter. Only when they say things will be fine do you genuinely believe it.
14. You associate certain scents with them. Cut grass reminds you of the time after your morning run. Football leather brings you to autumn evenings spent playing catch in the leaves. And don’t get us started on the smell of their pillow….
15. You dream of all the ways you can take care of them more than you dream of all the ways you want them to take care of you.
16. You never don’t want to listen to them – even when they sing Motown absolutely terribly in the shower.
17. When you do fight — it’s part of loving someone — you truly don’t want to be mad at them. You don’t talk badly about them after it’s resolved either because you know their actions came from a good place.
18. As if it’s even possible, you find them to be even cuter when they are sleeping. (I promise this isn’t creepy…)
19. They can come at you with anything — news, secrets, maybe even a baseball bat — and you won’t judge or hate them for it.
20. You wake up happy if only because you get to see them that day.

from Elitedaily

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Music log


Falling Slowly (Glen Hansard etc)
Hello (Adele)

Moonlight Sonata 1st and 2nd mov (Beethoven)
Romance Anonimo/d Amour or Spanish Romance
Fur Elise (Beethoven)
Clair de Lune (Claude Debussy)
Minuet in G (Bach)
Rondo alla Turca/Turkish March (Mozart)

Ballade pour Adeline
Marriage D'Amour

Nocturne no. 9 no. 2 (Chopin)
Fantasie Impromptu Op. 66 (Chopin)
Canon in D (Pachelbel)
Moonlight Sonata 3rd mov (Beethoven)
Habanera from "Carmen" (Bizet)
Liebestraum or Love Dream (Franz Liszt)